The Ykkönen is the second level of the Uralikan Jalkapalloliiga, which was founded on 30 May 2008. Its main sponsor is the Uralikan Ykköspankki. It, like the Bolakliiga and the Kakkonen's two divisions, comprises 20 teams. At the end of each season, the top two teams and the winner of a four-team playoff from this division are promoted, being replaced by the bottom three teams from the Bolakliiga. The complex playoff system involving the second-place teams from the Kakkonen and the third-worst team from this division was replaced with a simpler system in late April 2010, voted in by the boards of all sixty teams in Ykkönen and Kakkonen. Now, the bottom four are relegated, to be replaced by the top teams from both Kakkonen divisions, and the winners of playoffs in the same.
- Bumazhnik Solikamsk
- CSKA Syktyvkar
- FK Berezniki
- FK Kudymkar
- FK Ukhta (-)
- Fortuna Nizhny Tagil
- Isoustiukin Pallokerho (IPK)
- Khimik Koryazhma
- Krylja Uralikov (Glazov)
- Lokomotiv Kotlas (-)
- Mashinostroitel Aleksandrovsk
- Mordovia Saransk
- Olimpia Kirovo-Chepetsk
- Öskölömen Palloklubi (ÖPK)
- Pechorski SK
- Spartak Kirov
- Spartak Yoshkar-Ola (-)
- Turan Ukhta
- Ural Yekaterinburg
- Usovuoren JK (UJK)
(-) denotes relegated club
When the inaugural Ykkönen season started, four of the clubs had not yet completely formed and were therefore exempted from play. These were Krylyja Uralikov, FK Berezniki, Fortuna Nizhny Tagil, and Spartak Kirov.
Of the sixteen teams that actually did play, it turned into a two-horse race early with expected favourites CSKA Syktyvkar, Aleks Aleksandrovsk (as they were then known) and Khimik Koryazhma struggling, and two absolute dark horses completely dominating the league - the Hungarian club Trátyi TK were a perfect 15-0-0 with Transit Sosnogorsk only losing a 3-2 nailbiter to the aforementioned club.
Since the Kakkonen did not play this season and the full Ykkönen was not on either, there were no immediate relegations. (See below.)
Some of the most noteworthy matches of the season were actually found in the mid-table area as teams jockeyed for playoff spots. Aleks Aleksandrovsk, after a dismal start, tried to make a comeback to make the playoffs, winning four straight, however a loss against IPK and a draw against Turan late in the season cost them five important points. In the meantime, Pechorski SK got into the playoffs in dramatic fashion, defeating Khimik Koryazhma and CSKA Syktyvkar back-to-back to slip in at the last second, as Turan's draw against Aleks shot the Ukhta club in the foot. Had they defeated Aleks, they would have advanced to the playoffs on superior goal differential.
Sadly, Pechora's Cinderella story came to a heartbreaking end. They almost upset Öskölömen Palloklubi, as they were up 2-1 with 5 minutes left in regulation, before defender Jyrki Lapsonen converted a Marko Cheremissov corner to tie the game. They would lose in a penalty shootout after goalkeeper Erik Laaksonen parried a Vladimir Butsayev shot and Martti Huotari beat Vyacheslav Semyonov in the top-left corner. 5-3 was the final score in that semifinal.
The other playoff semi was far more one-sided. CSKVC Kirov (the Air Force team) were still red-faced over a late equaliser that gave Bumazhnik Solikamsk a 1-1 draw against them on their own pitch in Kirov, so they exacted revenge and then some, with Leevi Puttonen scoring a hat-trick to douse Bumazhnik 3-0 on their home turf in Solikamsk.
CSKVC Kirov "played their hearts out" in the final in Syktyvkar, and even with superb ÖPK goalkeeping, ex-SiPS benchwarmer Seppo Alkkis put his team into next season's Bolakliiga with an 89th-minute heartbreaker of a goal.
Before the season ended, the city of Yekaterinburg was annexed into Uralica, bringing with it a decent professional club in Ural Yekaterinburg. Because of this, Rossia Krasnokamsk was asked to drop down to the Kakkonen East Division. The two teams behind them voluntarily joined them, being replaced by an invited club, Mordovia Saransk, and Olimpia Kirovo-Chepetsk.
2009 Awards Edit
- Golden Ball - János Korsos (Trátyi TK)
- Golden Shoe - Mátyás Soltesz (Trátyi TK)
- Golden Gloves - Ulrik Sandberg (Transit Sosnogorsk)
- Fair Play Team Award - Turan Ukhta
- Fair Play Player Award - Länssi Salminen (Öskölömen Palloklubi)
Ykkönen All-Star XI:
GK Ulrik Sandberg (Transit Sosnogorsk)
LB Mikhail Fedotov (CSKVC Kirov)
RB Allan Wiebe (Trátyi TK)
CB Fedor Khrunov (Bumazhnik Solikamsk)
CB Gordie Rantamäki (Transit Sosnogorsk)
LM Ándrás Lisztes (Trátyi TK)
RM Länssi Salminen (Öskölömen Palloklubi)
AM János Korsos (Trátyi TK)
AM Pyotr Suvarov (Transit Sosnogorsk)
ST Kozma Bákos (Trátyi TK)
ST Kimmo Tukkonen (Öskölömen Palloklubi)